his men is an moonshine, and his whole bombastic order was designed as a fling at Grant. The latter has quietly and completely laid him low forever. Even the nigger cannot resurrect him. I may write you again from camp about Coosawhatchie, but I now consider myself afloat.
With sincere respect, as ever, your friend,
W. T. SHERMAN,
DEPARTMENT AND ARMY OF THE TENNESSEE,
OFFICE OF PROVOST-MARSHAL-GENERAL,
Beaufort, January 21, 1865.
Statement of two negroes who escaped from Charleston on the morning of the 19th of January, 1865.
Alfred, belonging to Dr. Francis Willis, of Savannah, and Tom, belonging to George H. Waring, of Savannah, were employed on the telegraph lines in and about Charleston, the former in the office of Willie Willis, telegraph operator at Charleston. They escaped from Charleston before daylight on the 19th, and state that General Hardee is in command of Charleston, General Johnston in command of the district. There is one division (General Wright's) in and about Charleston, two brigades being inside the works at Charleston, one brigade at Adams' Run, about twenty-seven miles from Charleston, between here and there, and one brigade at John's Island. There are two brigades one mile and a half beyond the ferry across the Combahee River and a masked battery of field Artillery on the left of the road three-fourths of a mile beyond the ferry. At Rantowles the road forks, one road leading to John's Island. It is ten miles by the dirt road and twelve miles by the railroad from Rantowles to Charleston. There are two small forts on the dirt road (the Charleston and Savannah State road) two miles beyond Rantowles, near where two large factory chimneys are left standing, the building being burned. There were no guns in them when these men passed. Toward Charleston from this place is the Five-Mile Fort, being two works, one on each side of the road, each mounting about four guns. The guns are black and they think are not field pieces. There are no rifle-pits near these forts. They both cover the dirt road, the one on the right going to Charleston also covering the railroad. Two miles and a half from Charleston there are rifle-pits crossing the dirt road, extending on the right going from here about half a mile to a marsh, and on the left about half a mile, including a plantation house, but do not know where they terminate. They can be seen distinctly for some distance, being on high ground.
Beyond this, near the new bridge, going into town, are two large forts, having no guns with the exception of one very large one. The guns for the defense of the place are on the other side toward the Bay. The troops mentioned are all Browne's Georgia Reserves. All the old troops that were there before the fall of Savannah have been sent to Branchville; also troops from Augusta and those that encamped from Savannah. There about ten warehouses filled with cotton at Charleston. The people wish to get in away, but General Hardee says he cannot give them transportation. All the engines and cars have been sent off excepting just enough for the use of the troops on the Savannah railroad. The people expect Charleston to be evacuated.